Summary
413 Stay Woke, Stay Active was founded on June 2, 2020 by two queer, black, Springfield natives, Simbrit Paskins and Stephany Marryshow, in response to the public and shameless murder of George Floyd and countless Black lives by the hands of the police.

 

This collective was founded BY the community, FOR the community. In aligning our values with the National Black Lives Matter Movement, our goal is to fight for the liberation of black people and for the elimination of systemic white supremacy.Through the careful organization of protests, marches and other local actions for Black Lives, we hope to continue to grow as a network and a resource. We are committed to providing continuous opportunities for BIPOC and allies to learn, collaborate, volunteer and change not only ourselves, but the world.

 

Donated funds help support 413 SWSA’s goal to cultivate a collaborative working and learning environment that is unapologetically Black and takes a radical approach to elevating BIPOC voices, leadership and business. We hope to stimulate  a nurturing environment that activates the public to move towards transformative justice. 413SWSA Collective provides a community platform to develop leaders who are passionate about our mission: To mitigate the effects of systemic racism by empowering BIPOC through education and direct action.

 

We prioritize Black Leadership and envision a movement run by BIPOC leaders in the 413 area, centered in Springfield, MA. Working in collaboration with local artists, schools, anti-racist organizations and allies, we strive to speak out, stand up and dismantle the systems of oppression that have plagued our people for far too long.

We are pleased to present a snapshot of our work,actions and impact thus far. 



 

Highlights: 413SWSA Actions and Impact
 

Las Vidas Negras Importan (Black Lives Matter) March - Holyoke, Ma - June 2, 2020

    • Collaboration with 413 Boricuas (Grassroots Community Group, Holyoke Based)

    • 1,000+ attendees of mixed language, race, age, ethnicity & ability  

    • Co-created & Published for the public a “List of Demands” for the Holyoke Police Department & Mayor to address the issue of Police Neglect, Brutality & Accountability 

      • The Mayor of the City of Holyoke responded with an Executive Order which recognizes Juneteenth as a paid holiday for city employees, establishes a “Citizen Police Advisory Committee” to advise the mayor on racial justice and policing, and calls for the creation of a racial equity public health professional position within the city Board of Health.

  • Chicopee BLM March- Chicopee, MA- June 6,2020

    • Consulted with 2 Chicopee community members who were planning a BLM March and requested organizational support from 413 SWSA

      • Consultation w/ them includes: Phone conversations/ Zoom Calls around background of their community such as but not limited to challenges that have arisen on the subject of race and BLM in the town, potential supporters of the work/ potential opposition to the work, 1.5 hr zoom call w/ Chicopee Police Lieutenant around citizen safety during the event, 413SWSA attempts at convincing the LT. to NOT have the officers in riot gear, coordination of guest speakers, the marching route, event scheduling, volunteers & signups, volunteer training & other logistics that support a safe and effective march

      • Donations Include: Volunteer Support materials such as Volunteer Arm Bands, Microphone/Speaker System, First Aid Supplies for Field Medics, Water/Snacks

      • 413 SWSA Direct Role in Chicopee: 

        • Simbrit- Help w/ set up/break down, Public Speaking for Opening Comments, Teaching Chants & Safety Commands (“Chant Etiquette”), Chant control while Marching, MCing ultimately, Providing “next steps” for attendees, co led moment of silence

        • Stephany- Help w/ set up/break down,Volunteer Coordination upon arrival, Security coordination, MCing, Chant control while marching, reviewing safety protocol for attendees, co led-moment of silence

    • 500+ attendees mixed language, race, age, ethnicity & ability

    • The turnout of the Chicopee March prompted local Chicopee organizers to host a direct community follow up event called “Chicopee Vigil, Vision and Voice Out in solidarity with BLM” 

      • Co Hosted by: Our Revolution Chicopee and First Ladies of Poverty Foundation

        • 413 SWSA consulted on scheduling and organization of this follow up event; 413SWSA also attended the event and helped with set up, break down, volunteer coordination and functionality of the event

        • Goal of the event was to hold space for a “peaceful vigil respecting & honoring the countless Black Lives lost to Police violence, develop shared vision of a racially & socially just and equitable Chicopee. And to voice stories of racial and social injustices of Chicopee followed by community demands co-created with 413 SWSA ”

        • 50+ community members  in attendance

          • This event has led to a few youth leaders actively working on police Defunding efforts in the Chicopee Area 

            • These youth wish to re allocate funds from the PD to youth programs, BIPOC safe spaces and funding for more inclusive and equitable anti racist curriculum development & training for school admin and teachers. 

            • 4 Chicopee youth  have continued on with 413SWSA as organizers  and have taken on volunteer leadership roles within other BLM related actions by coordinating events, performing as artists, and public speaking.

            • With more funding we hope to work closely with these youth on grassroots organizing efforts  and provide them with weekly or monthly stipends for their time. 

  • “Agawam Peaceful March #JusticeforBlackLives #BLM” Event - Agawam, MA - June 10, 2020

    • Consulted with 1 Agawam community member who was planning a BLM March and requested organizational support from 413 SWSA

      • Consultation w/ them includes: Phone conversations/ Zoom Calls around event marketing support (via Facebook mostly), background of their community such as but not limited to challenges that have arisen on the subject of race and BLM in the town, potential supporters of the work/ potential opposition to the work, citizen safety during the event, contact thus far w/ local police department, coordination of guest speakers, the marching route, event scheduling, volunteers & signups, volunteer training & other logistics that support a safe and effective march (i.e. event itinerary, chant lists)

      • Donations Include: Volunteer Support materials such as Volunteer Arm Bands & Safety Vests, Tent for sanitation station, water & snacks, Microphone/Speaker System, First Aid Supplies for Field Medics, Water/Snacks, Megaphones (6 total), 

      • 413 SWSA Direct Role in Agawam: 

        • Simbrit- Help w/ addressing the media, Help w/ set up/break down, Public Speaking for Opening Comments, Teaching Chants & Safety Commands (“Chant Etiquette”), Chant control while Marching, MCing ultimately, Providing “next steps” for attendees, co led moment of silence

        • Stephany- Help w/ addressing the media, Help w/ set up/break down,Volunteer Coordination upon arrival, Security coordination, MCing, Chant control while marching, reviewing safety protocol for attendees, co led-moment of silence

    • 700+ attendees mixed language, race, age, ethnicity & ability

  • The turnout of the Agawam March prompted local Agawam organizers to  host a direct community follow up meeting whose purpose was to  develop an organized collective of citizens from Agawam who wish to see systemic changes within their community around anti racist policing, practices and schooling. This group is currently looking to establish a  Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ) Cohort in Agawam, MA and are actively planning next steps. 

    • With More funding we would like to provide group training with this cohort around applying radical systemic changing pressure to their local politicians and schools for change.

 

  • Ludlow Town March for Black Lives- Ludlow, MA - June 20, 2020

    • Consulted with 3 Ludlow community members who were planning a BLM March and requested organizational support from 413 SWSA

      • Consultation w/ them includes: Phone conversations/ Zoom Calls around event marketing support (via Facebook mostly), background of their community such as but not limited to challenges that have arisen on the subject of race and BLM in the town, potential supporters of the work/ potential opposition to the work, citizen safety during the event, contact thus far w/ local police department & guidance on communicating with the town Board of Selectman, coordination of guest speakers, the marching route, event scheduling, volunteers & signups, volunteer training & other logistics that support a safe and effective march (i.e. event itinerary, chant lists), speech writing support for each of the 3 youth speakers 

    • Donations Include: Volunteer Support materials such as Volunteer Arm Bands & Safety Vests, Tent for sanitation station, water & snacks, Microphone/Speaker System, First Aid Supplies for Field Medics, Water/Snacks, Megaphones (6 total), 

    • 413 SWSA Direct Role in Ludlow: 

      • 413SWSA Hosted 2 Pre-Event Volunteer Trainings via Zoom Call - July 19, 2020: Following our model to prioritize Black leadership and collaborate with white allies, 413SWSA hosted 2 separate trainings to prep volunteers for the Ludlow Action.

        • 15+ Black Leadership CORE Volunteer attendees

          • Purpose: Review POC Safety Protocol & Safety Plans,  Review roles & expectations such as but not limited to peacekeeping and de-escalation, volunteer coordinating, chant etiquette and other leadership specific tasks; Q & A with Steph and Sim

        • 15+ white ally Volunteer attendees 

          • Purpose: Review roles & expectations of white/ non-black allies who were signed up to volunteer such as but not limited to crowd control, clean up and set up crew, water and first aid crew, not policing folks of color during the event etc.; Q & A with Steph and Sim 

      • Simbrit- Help w/ addressing the media, Help w/ set up/break down, Public Speaking for Opening Comments, Teaching Chants & Safety Commands (“Chant Etiquette”), Chant control while Marching, MCing ultimately, Providing “next steps” for attendees, co led moment of silence, help with youth care when 1 child fainted due to heat(*Medic Team took lead, Sim was there as a support & to make sure child was safely met by mother)

      • Stephany- Help w/ addressing the media, Help w/ set up/break down,Volunteer Coordination upon arrival, Security coordination, MCing, Chant control while marching, reviewing safety protocol for attendees, co led-moment of silence

  • 400+ attendees mixed language, race, age, ethnicity & ability

  • The turnout of the Ludlow March prompted local Ludlow organizers to create a Facebook group called “Ludlow Allies for Black Lives” and  host a direct community follow up conversation to  develop an organized collective of citizens from Ludlow who wish to see systemic changes within their community around anti racist policing, practices and schooling. 

    • So far, they have set up and attended a meeting with the Ludlow Police Department to initiate deeper conversation around anti racist practices within the department and have attended local Board of Selectmen meetings which were completely anti- BLM, calling it and anyone who participated Marxist; as well as gaslighting experiences of the Black community in Ludlow by publicly questioning the validity of stories told by a young black Ludlow native around his experiences with Ludlow PD and racial profiling.

    •   Ludlow’s Next steps include but are not limited to: writing letters to the Board of Selectmen voicing concerns about their response to community members sharing their stories, arranging voter awareness campaigns to promote anti racist leadership within the town for the 2021 voting year, arranging meetings with school leadership to address the need for anti racist curriculum and training for school staff, Connecting with local news outlets to keep Ludlow Movement for Black Lives at the forefront of the conversation in their town 

      • With More funding  413SWSA would like to provide group training for this collective of people around applying radical systemic changing pressure to their local schools and politicians for change; As well as pay a stipend  to any youth who would like to get more involved in grassroots organizing and community  leadership via 413 SWSA


Consulting: We have been asked to consult on several BLM related actions to guide, educate and assist with other local anti-racist events, demonstrations

  • Monson BLM Protest - June 7, 2020

  • West Springfield BLM Solidarity March (Youth-Run Event) - June 12, 2020

  • Westfield BLM March - Date TBD (Group has decided to support Westfield State University Anti-Racism Student Efforts and continues to receive support from 413SWSA) 

  • Southampton BLM Solidarity March -  June 23, 2020

  • Hampden/Wilbraham BLM Rally- June 17,2020

  • Families for Black Lives Caravan & Radio Show (93.9 The River)- July 3, 2020

    •  Click here to listen or Type the following Link into web browser: wrsi.com/monte/the-famlies-for-black-lives-caravan

  • 41SWSA White Fragility Book Club - Currently consulting around helping white allies learn and grow in their allyship and anti-racism.

  • Collaboration with local Springfield city officials, Black community leaders, *Pioneer Valley Project on efforts to address racist policies, comments and behaviors of the SPFLD Police Department & Commissioner 

  • *A Knee Is Not Enough (AKINE), Easthampton,MA - Currently consulting around local BLM actions, community conversations and organizing demands to the Easthampton Police Dept.

*413SWSA White Fragility Book Club is an affiliate group inspired by 413 Stay Woke Stay Active Facebook group and run by a white 413SWSA team member. They encourage folx who are white and/or are white passing to engage in anti-racist text-based discussion and motivation towards action in the 413 area of Western Mass. 

*Pioneer Valley Project-Acting together for racial and economic justice. Building a community where we all belong.

*A Knee Is Not Enough (AKINE) is a BIPOC led, community-based, grassroots group that was founded in partnership with Massachusetts Jobs with Justice after Easthampton police department and public officials took a knee for eight and a half minutes to acknowledge the murder of George Floyd by Minneapolis Police, but did not follow up with further action. We demand that the city of Easthampton commits to more than just a symbolic protest on behalf of Black, Indigenous, and other communities of color in our city.
 

 Appearances/Speaking Engagements: In our activism and commitment to engaging communities within the 413 area on topics of Racism, Allyship & BIPOC Empowerment, we have been asked to speak at several BLM related actions. We have also partnered with BIPOC led organizations in our efforts. See details below.

  • Springfield BLM March (Youth-Led Action) - June 3, 2020 - 3,000+ attendees

  • Wilbraham BLM Rally - June 17, 2020- 100+ attendees

  • *Peaceful Roots 413 Juneteenth Celebration, Springfield,MA - June 19,2020- 200+ Attendees 

  •  “This Isn't a Fourth of July Party”, Holyoke, MA Event: A community mural event honoring those who have come before us and giving ourselves a moment to let loose. This isn’t a Fourth of July party because I cannot celebrate my country’s “Independence Day” until all of our citizens are free!  

  • Springfield Citizen’s Pop-Up Action to address Police Commissioner - July 2, 2020

  • *Take the Mic Public Speaking Program for Girls Reading of Frederick Douglass’ “What to the Slave is 4th of July?” - July 3, 2020 - Facebook Live Event

  • *Peaceful Roots 413 Arts Protest & Black Business Matters March- July 7,2020

  • Black Trans Lives Matter March, Northampton,MA  - July 18, 2020

→ Thanks to supportive donations received so far,  413SWSA was able to GIVE BACK to our community and sponsor the Springfield BLM Mural Art Protest by donating funds needed to create the mural on  July 19, 2020!

*Peaceful Roots 413 - By spreading love and positivity Peaceful Roots’ mission is to unify the Black and Brown community to overcome systematic oppression

*Take the Mic Public Speaking Program for Girls is a Black, female-led public speaking program in Springfield, MA that focuses on building self-esteem, empowerment and speaking performances focusing on confidence and leadership.

 

Actions and initiatives 413SWSA is planning to launch or support via partnerships with other organizations doing this work

  • Direct actions to bring awareness to injustice and promote change 

    • Actions against racist policing and demanding police accountability

    • Community education to dialogue and reimagine public safety in Holyoke and Springfield (defunding the police framework)

    • Black  Votes Matter Week (A week-long series of community events to encourage Black voting, civic engagement, political volunteerism etc. )

    • The Truth Behind Series (A workshop series that exposes the true history behind the pervasiveness of systemic racism- Topics will include: US History, Schooling, Food Systems, Healthcare, LGBTQ+ Movements, Latinx History etc. )

  • Trainings and Workshops

    • Volunteer trainings so actions are safe, successful and productive 

    •  Know Your Rights Trainings

    •  Legal Observer Training sessions

    • Active Bystander Training 

    • Antiracism community work 

  • Community building projects to unify and elevate the community and its members

    • Collaboration with food justice efforts  

    • Establishing a BIPOC- Run Collaborative Co-Working Space and Performance Venue as a community resource (Art Showcases, BIPOC Business Networking Events, Direct Action Trainings, Anti-Racism Workshops etc.)

    • Developing & Supporting educational opportunities to increase Black/BIPOC access to education and power (knowledge, numbers, wealth)

    • Youth Services 

    • Supporting a professional network for the black business community 

  • Fb Group of over 8,000 members  is growing and developing into an actively anti-racist online community that:

    • Provides emotional and physical support to BIPOC community organizers, creates space for the support of Black businesses and leadership opportunities

    • Highlights local BLM related news /BLM events within the 413 area 

    • Calls White and Non-Black People of  Color IN while providing Allyship Support, resources and spaces for constructive dialogue

      • Affiliate FB Group: “413SWSA: Disrupting Whiteness and Celebrating Blackness” 

Donations to 413SWSA support the following current needs and future dreams:  

  • Supplies for community actions (current need)

    • Signs, armbands for volunteer leaders, safety vests, walkie talkies for security, water, medical supplies, food etc. 

  •  Compensation to black people for their work building on this initiative (current need)

    • Stipends for Stephany and Simbrit so they can work less hours at other jobs and dedicate more time to building on this work . Their hope is for this to become full time work.

    • Youth Stipends for young activists speaking publicly at local actions and growing in their organizing skills by working directly with 413 SWSA

    • Contract black people to run workshops, cater events, documentation such as videography/photography, social media management (Facebook group is over 8,000 members)  and other services to support organizational and community growth

  • Overhead/Operation fees such as storage for protest supplies, wifi/other technology, collaborative work space  (rent, utilities, office supplies, furniture, renovations, security system, company management technology, staff etc) (dream for the near future)

  • Travel to meet other national organizers to stay connected to the larger movement and grow in our skills (dream for the near future)

  •  Charter a bus to provide transportation for lobbying in surrounding areas, Boston, Washington DC or beyond (dream for the near future)

413 Stay Woke, Stay Active   

IMPACT SNAPSHOT 6/02/20-7/20/20

358 Dwight St.

Holyoke, MA 01040

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